Nunley Sets Kentucky Record With 10-0 Start

Former Soddy-Daisy Star Has 2.16 ERA

Thursday, March 7, 2013 - by special report to chattanoogan.com

LEXINGTON, Ky. – For the third consecutive week since entering the rankings on Feb. 12, the University of Kentucky softball team has moved up in both collegiate softball polls to No. 15 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 and No. 17 in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaches Association Top 25, it was announced Tuesday.

Kentucky’s top-15 posting in this week’s ESPN.com/USA Softball poll ties the highest ranking by the outlets in school history. The Wildcats were also ranked 15th nationally by ESPN.com/USA Softball on April 26, 2011. The highest ranking in school history was 13th in the 2012 USA Today/NFCA preseason rankings. All national rankings have come during the tenure of sixth-year head coach

ukathletics.com/sports/w-softbl/mtt/rachel_lawson_363819.html">Rachel Lawson.

UK began the season receiving votes in both polls before entering the rankings for the first time on Feb. 12 at No. 22/24. The Wildcats inched up to No. 20/21 the following week before entering the top 20 in both polls last week at No. 17/19.

The move up the rankings comes after UK went undefeated in consecutive tournaments for the first time in school history. The Wildcats went 3-0 in the Coke Zero Spartan Classic two weeks ago before posting a 5-0 mark in the Under Armour Invitational last weekend. The eight-game winning streak – which ties the longest in school history – moved UK to 16-3 on the year, which is the best record UK has ever had 19 games into a season. The previous mark was 15-4 by the 2011 squad.

Kentucky has earned the strong start against a trying schedule, playing eight of its 19 games against team that are currently ranked or receiving votes in either poll. UK has four wins over currently ranked teams in No. 6/6 California, No. 16/19 Washington, No. 19/18 Stanford and No. rv/23 Oregon State. The Wildcats have also defeated USC Upstate, who is receiving votes in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll and USF, who is receiving votes in both polls. Cal and USF were participants in the 2012 Women’s College World Series.

The Wildcats’ three losses this season have come to No. 1/2 Oklahoma, No. 3/3 Arizona State and unranked Portland State.

Kentucky’s schedule does not get easier as the Wildcats begin Southeastern Conference action this weekend against Ole Miss. The Wildcats are scheduled to face eight teams that are either ranked or receiving votes in either poll, spanning 19 games. UK will play three-game sets against No. 2/1 Alabama, No. 4/4 Florida, No. 7/5 Missouri, No. 12/12 LSU and Mississippi State, who is receiving votes in both polls. The Wildcats will also have a home-and-home series with No. 13/13 Louisville and single-game contests against No. 25/25 North Carolina and Iowa, who is receiving votes in both polls.

The SEC is well represented in the rankings with seven teams in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 and eight teams in the USA Today/NFCA Top 25. Alabama, Florida, Texas A&M, Missouri and Tennessee are in the top 10 in both polls, while LSU is 12th in both polls and Georgia is 24th in the USA Today/NFCA poll and receiving votes in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll. Mississippi State is receiving votes in both polls.

For the latest on UK softball, follow "@UKSoftball" on Twitter or like Kentucky Softball on Facebook.

(NOTE: Throughout the release, the ESPN.com/USA Softball ranking is listed first, followed by the USA Today/NFCA ranking.)

Nunley Sets School Record with 10-0 Start: University of Kentucky freshman pitcher Kelsey Nunley from Soddy-Daisy High School, is off to an impressive start to her collegiate career with a 10-0 record, becoming the first player in school history to start a season 10-0 in the circle.

Nunley leads the Wildcats with a 2.16 earned-run average this season in a team-high 68 innings pitched with 55 strikeouts. The native of Soddy Daisy, Tenn., has five complete games and one shutout on the year and has allowed only 21 earned runs. In her six starts this season, Nunley is 6-0 with a 1.23 ERA, throwing 40 innings with 37 strikeouts and only seven earned runs.

The rookie hurler is coming off a strong showing in the Under Armour Invitational, where she went 3-0 with a 1.94 ERA. Nunley threw 21.2 innings for the Wildcats over the weekend, allowing six earned runs with 18 strikeouts.

Nunley’s wins have come against stiff competition this season, as she has earned wins against highly ranked Stanford, Washington and Oregon State. The freshman also won against San Diego State and USC Upstate, who both were receiving votes earlier in the year.

Nunley has earned the 10-0 start in just 13 appearances, shattering the previous school-best win-loss record in 13 appearances or less. Current UK student assistant coach Chanda Bell, who holds nearly every career pitching record in school annals, went 8-3 in 13 appearances her freshman season in 2009, while current junior pitcher Ellen Weaver is the only other Wildcat to go undefeated after 13 appearances in the circle, posting a 6-0 record to start the 2011 season.

(E-mail Stan Crawley at wscrawley@earthlink.net)

.



PREP SCHEDULE

(Please notify us of any schedule changes and times as well as game and match scores at news@chattanoogan.com) Softball: MONDAY, APRIL 23 Soddy Daisy at Baylor 5 p.m.  Notre Dame at Silverdale 5 p.m.   TUESDAY, APRIL 24 Tyner at Brainerd Sequatchie Co. at Notre Dame Howard at Hixson Red Bank at East Ridge Riverdale at Baylor ... (click for more)

PHOTOS: 2018 Tennessee Orange And White Game

TBI Puts Man Who Killed 4 At Waffle House On Its "10 Most Wanted" List

A man who killed four people and injured two others at a Waffle House near Nashville on Sunday morning is still on the loose and has been added to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation's ‘Top 10 Most Wanted’ list. He was identified as Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, Ill., was arrested last year when he was in a restricted area at the White House in Washington, D.C. Reinking ... (click for more)

Dayton Teen Arrested After Running From Deputies On Highway 60; Passenger Caught With Drugs

Hamilton County Sheriff deputies caught up with a Dayton teen who drove off at a high rate of speed on Highway 60 on Sunday afternoon. A passenger in the vehicle was caught with drugs. At approximately  5 p.m. , deputies observed a white Chrysler 200 traveling south in the 7800 block of Highway 60 at a high rate of speed. The driver was improperly passing other vehicles ... (click for more)

Teachers Have Good Compensation Compared To Other Taxpayers - And Response

Hamilton County experienced a property tax increase of about 10.7 percent in 2017. By law the reappraisal of property shall not increase tax revenue. So after the reappraisal the state certified millage rate for Hamilton County was 2.4976 per hundred dollars assessed value. The county commission voted to raise the millage rate to 2.7652 per hundred. That's about a 10.7 percent increase ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

All of us who marvel at the sound of bagpipes at a funeral realize the majesty that people like piper Scottie Maclellan can lend to any “homecoming” and for years there has been a wonderful tale out of Nova Scotia that leads this week’s parade of The  Saturday  Funnies. Mind you, I do not write these stories, as many who have followed man’s laughter down through the ... (click for more)